Back To School Show and Tell Ideas

One thing you can count on during the first days of school is the inevitable question of “What did you do over the summer?” Here are a few creative ways to describe your summer experiences for the first edition of Show and Tell.

1. Flip Books

Create a moving picture of your summer fun with a flip book. Start out with a Post-It pad or a pocket-sized spiral notebook. Draw the first picture on the last sheet of paper and work your way to the first page by changing the picture little by little. For instance, if you learned how to surf over the summer, you might start with a picture of you lying on a surfboard in calm waters. The next picture could show the waters growing a little choppier. The following drawings could be of you slowly turning, then standing on the board as the wave grows larger, and so on.

2. Summer Collage

Illustrate your summer happenings with one of my favorite forms: collages. Simply use glue to cover a poster board or even several small postcard-sized papers with magazine cutouts, sections of road maps, photographs, movie and concert ticket stubs, restaurant menus, train schedules, and any other mementos from your summer.

3. Map It

Instead of just telling the class where you went and what you did, pinpoint our summer destinations and activities on a map. If you stayed close to home, use a local road map. If you were able to travel to several cities and states, use a countrywide map. Glue magazine cutouts of activities, or actual photos of your fun onto the map. For example, if you went to a dude ranch in Dallas, glue a picture of a horse onto the map in Dallas. If you visited Mount Rushmore, glue a photo of your family onto the map in South Dakota. The same goes for rock climbing, swimming, snorkeling, and anything else you had a chance to enjoy over the summer months.

4. Seashell Memories

Capture every fun moment of summer vacation on seashells. If you didn’t get a chance to go to the beach, don’t worry-most craft and hobby stores sell bags of seashells. Use acrylic paint and a clean paintbrush to paint pictures inside the shells. My son’s summer shells feature an octopus in the ocean (from snorkeling-we didn’t actually see an octopus, but he wishes he had), a colorful clown from a friend’s birthday party, an airplane in the clouds, and the night sky filled with stars and a bright crescent moon.
Deborah Shelton is a mother, freelance writer, and author of “The Five Minute Parent: Fun & Fast Activities for You and Your Little Ones.” Visit Deborah’s website for more family-friendly ideas: http://www.fiveminuteparent.com

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